Images used in the planning stages of an implant treatment used to be of the two dimensional quality, which sometimes resulted in distortions that affect the accuracy of treatment planning. The two dimensional images obtained through using conventional dental X-rays give implant dentists limited information, as the images do not give a clear idea on the quantity and quality of the patients jawbone. As a result, the accuracy of the implant placement was sometimes compromised.
The advent of new technology through cone beam computed tomography (CBCT) scans allows implant dentists to formulate more precise implant treatment plans that are safer for the patient, and also gives a higher level of predictability as to the treatments outcome. The dental CBCT scanner uses a cone-shaped beam to obtain images as it rotates around the patients head in a comfortable, non-invasive way. The three dimensional images are then processed by CAD/CAM imaging software to produce an accurate visualisation of the patients anatomical structure, making it easier for the implant treatment planning (and the actual dental implants placement) to proceed with high accuracy.
Advantages of CBCT Scans
Scans produce clear three dimensional images that help in more accurate and safer dental implant treatment planning, diagnosis, and actual placement.
Getting the images using a dental CBCT scan is quick, minimally invasive, and does not cause any discomfort to the patient. The quick and comfortable scanning process will make the process easier for patients to go through – especially for those who are suffering from anxiety or dental phobia.
A single scan can produce hundreds of images that can be manipulated using the CAD/CAM imaging software, enabling the implant dentist to construct an accurate visualisation of the patients anatomical structure.
Internal anatomy of the patient (height and density of jawbone structure, nerves in the general area where implant will be placed) can readily be seen with the three dimensional data, unlike the two dimensional information obtained from conventional X-rays.
The 3D imaging software can be used to give the patient a visual representation of what the implant treatment involves, for better understanding and peace of mind about the upcoming treatment. The patient will also be able to prepare better for the implant placement with the information presented by the imaging software.
Dental cone beam computed tomography scans expose patients to reduced radiation levels, compared to that emitted by conventional CT scans.
The use of dental CBCT scans is more affordable compared to using traditional dental CT scans.